The company that produces the critically-acclaimed Netflix series The Crown has formally apologized to Claire Foy and Matt Smith regarding the pay inequity scandal that sprung up last week. It was revealed that Claire, who plays Queen Elizabeth II, was paid less than her King Philip co-star for two seasons of the show.
Left Bank Pictures addressed the outcry with a formal statement via Deadline, “We want to apologize to both Claire Foy and to Matt Smith, brilliant actors and friends, who have found themselves at the center of a media storm this week through no fault of their own. Claire and Matt are incredibly gifted actors who, along with the wider cast on The Crown, have worked tirelessly to bring our characters to life with compassion and integrity.”
The statement continued to express that the company is “responsible for budgets and salaries; the actors are not aware of who gets what, and cannot be held personally responsible for the pay of their colleagues.” They also went on to write that the company is “united with the fight for fair pay, free of gender bias, and for re-balancing of the industry’s treatment of women.”
While the British stars have yet to open up about the issue, their fans have certainly jumped to their defense, in part by creating a petition to encourage Matt to donate the difference between their salaries to Time’s Up.
The news officially came up on March 13 during an INTV Conference panel discussion with Left Bank executives Suzanne Mackie and Andy Harries . Going forward, Suzanne said, the Queen (played by Olivia Colman in Season 3) will be the show’s highest-compensated cast member. “No one gets paid more than the Queen,” she stated.